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Mark Haslam’s The Secret Class is pure class


A good promotional video doesn’t sell a magician, it sells a mood. This trailer for Mark Haslam’s one-man show, The Secret Class, is – and you’ll have to excuse the pun – a masterclass in nostalgia. From the quick cuts between sepia-toned magic ephemera to Haslam’s effortlessly charming, honeyed diction, the video immediately conveys a kind of intense yearning for a bygone golden age of magic. And that fits perfectly. The show follows a gentle narrative that draws heavily from Haslam’s childhood discovery of magic. To quote his website:

If details are important for magic, they’re even more crucial for a story, and for theirs Mark and Gordon drew on Mark’s experiences growing up in his Lake District village, where birdwatchers up from London nest in the hotels, and where natural vistas celebrated by Wordsworth are visible outside classroom windows.

While The Secret Class is billed as a one-man show, it’s not completely a solo joint. Magic writer, inventor, and former head librarian at The Magic Castle, Gordon Bean, is the show’s co-creator and co-producer. Marcus Dillistone and Andy Street contributed cinematic images and original music, respectively.  

The trailer was shot back in September of last year, during two consecutive evening performances at The Peacock Theatre in Frisco, also known as, “my boss’s house.” Yep, GeniiOnline owner and Gearbox Software CEO, Randy Pitchford, has a fully featured, vaudeville variety theatre in his goddamn house. I suppose technically I helped build it, considering how many of his games I’ve bought over the years.

For the record, while Bean and Pitchford go way back – they met in the late 90’s at The Magic Castle – I wouldn’t be covering The Secret Class if it wasn’t good. 

Haslam and Bean have yet to announce any future dates for the show, but rest assured we’ll let you know when they do.